There Will Be Blood and Money

And a lawsuit. And many, many questions about the relationship between a local hospital and the world’s largest medical device company.

At the end of the session, during a question-and-answer period, Gossman decided that it was the right time to raise his concerns about the use of Endeavor. He posed a hypothetical question. Let’s say, he began, a medical device company approached a hospital and offered access to an experimental device, but only if the hospital bought more of its other products. What, Gossman asked, would the review board say about that kind of arrangement?

To outsiders, such a question may sound innocuous enough, but the doctors in the room instantly recognized the significance of what Gossman seemed to be alleging. If a hospital were to agree to buy more of a device company’s products in exchange for something it wanted — access to the trials of an experimental device, for instance  — it would not only be ethically suspect, but could be breaking federal law.

Piemonte was incredulous that Gossman would casually throw out such an explosive accusation in the meeting. He turned to Gossman. Do you actually believe that kind of deal has been struck at Lahey? he asked.

Gossman nodded yes.

Less than two weeks later, on the morning of September 8, Gossman was called to a meeting with a handful of hospital executives and fired. He was not given a reason. After 22 years, his career at the Lahey Clinic was over, effective immediately. An administrative director and a security guard escorted him from the cath lab, past colleagues and patients and out to the employee parking lot. Because Gossman’s car was in the shop that day, the administrator had to drive him home.

Soon after Gossman’s departure, Piemonte called a meeting of cath-lab staffers. Gossman was no longer a Lahey employee, he said. For confidentiality reasons, Piemonte couldn’t provide many details, but according to an employee who attended the meeting, he told staff members not to gossip about Gossman’s firing — a directive that seemed to carry with it an unspoken “or else.” “It was like an earth-shaking event,” says the employee. “We were totally blindsided by it.” (Through a Lahey spokesman, Piemonte denies forbidding anyone from discussing the firing.)

In October, Gossman filed a lawsuit against Lahey, Piemonte, and the head of the clinic’s cardiology department, Richard Nesto. In the suit, Gossman made explicit what he had only hinted at with his question two months earlier. He’d heard that a Medtronic sales rep had offered Piemonte a deal that would benefit them both: If the cath lab used more Medtronic products, it would be selected to participate in the clinical trials for CoreValve.

In the suit, Gossman invoked a law that protects medical whistleblowers, and claimed he’d been illegally terminated for speaking out about the deal. He also argued he was entitled to at least $5 million because the hospital had ruined his reputation. “My career in New England, it’s over,” Gossman says. “Lahey Clinic has completely and successfully destroyed my career here.”

  • RN33

    How much did they pay you to throw Tom to the wolves and keep the true culprit Dick Nesto out of the story?

  • Gloria

    Gossman is an evil man who treated women with little respect. At least 8 women filed sexual harassment complaints against him.

  • Gloria

    Gossman is an evil man who treated women with little respect. At least 8 women filed sexual harassment complaints against him.

  • Bob

    What exactly is the story here? Retaliation for being fired?

  • RN33

    If 8 women filed sexual harassment complaints against Gossman then how did he last twenty years in the organization? Furthermore, why would Lahey then skirt around the issue and not come out and plain

  • RN33

    say that he violated policy and was fired with due cause and process. An organization “taking the high road” is not letting 1 woman let alone 8 be harassed and allowing the harasser to remain on

  • E.

    In defense of Dave Gossman, how would a man continue in his position in a major medical facility having harassed so many women over so long a period of time. One of the female staff at Lahey, who per

  • Mike

    One man let made a killing as a paid speaker for pharma, let Piemonte get on with his shady dealings, then destroyed the whistleblower Gossman and now is the CMOO of the Lahey, Richard Nesto MD. He is

  • harod

    At the Lahey, you dot your I’s , cross your T’s, and make $ signs out of your S’s. This isn’t the first time that Lahey paid out for their suspicious relationship with industry and it won’t be t

  • joseph

    I heard that Dr. Peimonte owns $millions in Stock w Medtronix, and was paid $100K/yr. as consultant too. Sounds like Leahy has a conflict 2 me!

  • Jess

    I am very familiar with Lahey Clinic and many of the professionals that the hospital employs. I feel the care is superior at Lahey and I have never found a reason to doubt the integrity of Lahey staff

  • Sandi’s Ghost

    The real culprit here is Richard Nesto who heads up Cardiology also having affair with COO Lynn Stofer and is in line for next CEO with Corkery, Healy, Rosenblatt all pathetic Lahey choices.

  • ron

    get real..he lasted 20 years just as several other doctors at Lahey who get away with sexual/verbal harassment/horizontal violence…lahey protects them from the underlings or “pee-ons” as one female md refers to all staff under md level